Page 30 - Chiron Autumn 2018
P. 30

  Guernsey Liberation Celebrations
Barrie D Davey
“They counted us on”
I am a recent member, only having joined on March the 19th of this year, so I’ve been elected to put something together regarding the trip to The Channel Isles, (Guernsey, Sark & Herm.)
Little did I know that we were to set off at 04:30hrs in the morning.
Terrified of missing the coach I set my alarm for 03:00hrs, up on time I joined the rest at the embarkation point. The coach arrived on time and (we were counted on,) a procedure that was to become a routine every time we embarked, disembarked or moved from one venue to another.
Stopping off at a much-needed watering or de-watering place (for most,) we stretched our legs bought a few snacks and generally readied ourselves for the next leg of the journey (we were counted back on.)
08:00hrs We arrived at the ferry port
on time and were efficiently ushered on
to the Condor Ferry, making our way
to our allotted seats we noticed the Gurkhas already ensconced in theirs, fond greetings were exchanged, then we took up our seats. A much-needed Breakfast was provided, (on the strict understanding we did not order Champagne.) Some way into the crossing we were invited onto the Bridge (a surprise to all) to be shown the mysteries of navigation, ships hardware, and statistics. A few of the chaps had
the privilege of speaking with a Marine Biologist who was on board studying and researching the marine wildlife off of our coasts. She pointed out some adult seals of both sexes with their pups explaining which was which and how to identify them.
11:00hrs Arriving in St Peter Port we disembarked, collected our cases
and were met by Mr Rob Grant the organizer and host who immediately
took us in hand, boarding the coach (we were counted on) then swiftly taken to LesRocquettes Hotel. One of us was going to be lucky to have a room on his own so we drew straws, by chance the first man to pull out a straw was the lucky one. So of to our rooms, unpack, and down to a much-needed lunch.
19:30hrs We were collected (counted on) and taken to the Venue of the SpecSavers Hangar Ball.
Wow!! Everyone was dressed in 1940s costume, some had really pushed the boat out, many costumes were so well designed and presented sometimes you didn’t know whether or not you were speaking to a real military person of the period or not. The spiv was one of the best trying hard to sell his black market
Nylon stockings, knickers and watches, I felt sure if you’d produced the Halfcrown he was asking for, he would have parted with one or two items. All other guests were seated at their allotted tables then we were piped into the hall to enthusiastic clapping. It was awesome. We took our seats immediately having to arise to go and get our dinner of vegetable and or meat curry. The stage production was superb and included dancing of the times in costume and a large band, all relayed around the huge hall projected onto TV-type monitors. After the meal, the dancing and fun began, I didn’t actually see it but I’m sure someone must have got up on a table, they were dancing in the aisles, a wonderful night. One we will all remember forever. Every bit as good as the original I’m sure.
Back to the hotel and a much-earned nights sleep.
The Hotel provided a full choice of breakfast, I was already putting on weight.
10:30hrs Picked up, (they counted us on.) Mr Rob Grant proudly took us to the Freemasons lodge, we were entertained and given a very enlightening talk on Freemasonry by someone who I think
was the Grand Master no questions were left unanswered. The lodge was, without doubt, one of the nicest I have ever been lucky enough to have been inside.
12:30hrs On to the Guernsey Sporting Club, light bar snacks. I asked a very silly question, “What Sports do most of the members partake in,” after scratching his head the gentleman I had spoken to, said he thought there might be a snooker table upstairs and maybe a darts board, other than that nothing he could think of, he explained it was just a gentleman’s club. From my observations at the Specsavers Hangers Ball, there seemed to be a disproportionately greater number of females on the Island than males, I can only suppose the men had to have a retreat. A great time was had by all present. Our transport arrived at 14:30hrs to collect us (once more we were counted on) back to the Hotel.
19:45hrs Collected, (counted on) and whisked off to the Ex-Service Club another club with strange rules. They welcomed us with open arms, two singers entertained us all evening, a great evening of darts and fun.
22:30hrs Back to Hotel

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